Category: 杭州龙凤

Arctic region hot topic at Whistler, B.C., summit

WHISTLER, B.C. – The Arctic may be a hot commodity, with remarkable resource and tourism opportunities, but a conference has heard that Canada and the United States are barely out of the ice age when it comes to harnessing its growth.

Business and political leaders from both countries heard Wednesday that while Russia is building more than a dozen icebreakers to transport liquefied natural gas to Asia, jurisdictions in Alaska, the Yukon and Northwest Territories are still trying to organize business meetings.

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“Despite the very good practical relations between Canada and Alaska and the territories, we still have two kinds of solitudes in respect of each one reporting to their federal governments far away,” said Canadian Arctic expert John Higginbotham.

“What we need is high-level political and high-level business attention to the Arctic development in that region if we are ever going to keep up with the very rapid developments that Russia and Norway and Sweden and other countries are investing in.”

The Russians are developing a northern sea route through which atomic-powered icebreakers will move oil, gas and LNG to Asian customers, said Higginbotham who heads the Arctic program at the think-tank known as the Centre for International Governance Innovation.

“There’s great interest. They (the Russians) realize what the melting Arctic is going to mean over the next 20, 30, 40 years for commerce, for economic development,” he said. “(For us) the penny has yet to fully drop, but the consciousness is increasing.”

Delegates attending the annual Pacific Northwest Economic Region Summit in Whistler, B.C., heard that Arctic development in Alaska and Canada’s northern territories is ripe with potential, but cross-border co-operation is required.

Higginbotham said he’s encouraged that an organization like PNWER, which represents 10 states, provinces and territories, has focused on strengthening northern ties.

“There’s going to have to be a breakthrough in terms of co-operation and investment,” he said. “The responsibility falls on both the federal governments, the regional governments and particularly on business communities. It’s up to North America to get its act together in the Arctic.”

University of Victoria public administration Prof. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly said Russia pulls 37 per cent of its gross domestic product from the Arctic while Canada earns less than 10 per cent.

He said the Russian economy has tapped into the Arctic in a massive way, while North America is barely touching its potential.

“That’s why the discussion on the Arctic here at PNWER shows that even the business community in the northern part of North America is still at the level where they are organizing themselves,” said Brunet-Jailly. “The Russians have done this a quarter century ago. They are ahead of the deal.”

But Alaska State Rep. Bob Herron said recent increased U.S. State Department attention and Canada’s consistent focus on Arctic development has him confident the region is on track to realize its potential.

“Arctic awareness is going to have to be treated just like a campaign,” he said. “Just like a company trying to sell a product. Arctic awareness is important not only to the United States, not only to Canada, but to the world. It’s just that that education process has begun but sometimes that education takes a long time.”

Continue reading Arctic region hot topic at Whistler, B.C., summit

Cruise line bars Hamilton, Ont. woman after asking whether she’s pregnant

Watch above: Cruise line bars traveller after asking whether she’s pregnant. Sean O’Shea reports
TORONTO – Michelle Ligori and her husband had saved up to take a seven-day vacation aboard one of the world’s largest cruise ships, Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas. But when the time came for the Hamilton couple and two young sons to board the 225,000 ton behemoth, excitement turned to shock. It all came down to a surprise question from a customer service representative checking the family in for the vacation.

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“The girl at the counter said ‘any chance you’re pregnant?’ And I was taken off guard and said ‘yes, I found out a few days before we left’ and she said ‘do you have a note?’ She told us you cannot get on without a note,” said Ligori.

Ligori had shown positive on a home pregnancy test but had not yet been to her family doctor. She and her husband did not want to say anything to family members, or their two young sons, because the pregnancy was at the very early stages.

“We were treated like parasites,” Ligori said of Royal Caribbean, which refused to accept a hastily-written medical letter from a doctor arranged in Ontario. The note read that there was no reason Ligori could not travel.

With time ticking away before the cruise ship left, Ligori says she asked Royal Caribbean if she could be seen by the ship’s doctor. She says representatives refused and the family missed the departure. Ligori says she subsequently saw a doctor at a local Florida hospital who issued the note without even conducting a pregnancy test.

“My husband, my two children and I were stuck,” said Ligori, adding the family had to stay at a hotel, take taxi rides and then board a flight to the Bahamas at their own expense to catch up with the cruise ship. The family missed two days of the vacation and has not received compensation from Royal Caribbean, except for a $250 goodwill credit towards a future cruise.

Royal Caribbean did not return emails and phone calls from Global News to discuss the Ligori case. The company, which also operates Celebrity Cruises, discusses pregnancy on its website. It reads: “Royal Caribbean International cannot accept guests who will have entered their 24th week of pregnancy by the beginning of, or at any time during the cruise or cruisetour. A physician’s ‘Fit to Travel’ note is required prior to sailing, stating how far along (in weeks) your pregnancy will be at the beginning of the cruise and confirming that you are in good health and not experiencing a high-risk pregnancy.”

Many women asked by Global News say it’s unacceptable for companies even to ask about pregnancy in the first two trimesters.

“I don’t think you should ever ask a woman if she’s pregnant,” said one. Another put it this way: “Is it anybody’s right to ask (about pregnancy)? I would say no.”

On seven previous cruises, Ligori says no one ever posed the question. This was her first voyage with Royal Caribbean.

“I believe other cruise lines would have handled it better.”

Continue reading Cruise line bars Hamilton, Ont. woman after asking whether she’s pregnant

Whitecaps captain Jay DeMerit announces retirement

WATCH: Jay Demerit officially announced his retirement Tuesday. Barry Deley has more.

Jay DeMerit, the only captain the Vancouver Whitecaps have known in Major League Soccer, has announced his retirement.

“Watching the guys play it just kind of dawned on me ‘I think these days are over,’” he said at a press conference. “I looked down and saw an ankle with one real tendon.

“I didn’t think I had it in me anymore.”

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DeMerit, who was signed by the Whitecaps in 2010, had previously spent six seasons with English club Watford.

He also played 25 games with the U.S. national team, including starting four games for the country in the 2010 World Cup.

His improbable ascent from from the ninth tier of English football to the Premier League and World Cup was the focus of Rise and Shine: The Jay DeMerit Story, an independent movie released in 2011.

DeMerit had battled injuries in recent years, tearing his Achilles in 2013. Last month, he suffered a torn tendon in his left ankle.

A stalwart defender, Demerit was named to the MLS All-Star team in 2012, and quickly became a fan favourite in Vancouver.

“They found the right guy,” said Global BC’s Squire Barnes. “He delivered on and off the field. When you’re a new team, you need that face to bridge the gap, and he was the guy to do it.”

As for DeMerit, he will stay in Vancouver and looking to his new life.

“I am excited for the future,” he said. “By no means is this the end.”

Continue reading Whitecaps captain Jay DeMerit announces retirement

Centre of Gravity wants to revisit August long weekend

KELOWNA — The stage is set for the launch of the Centre of Gravity at Kelowna’s City Park.

Festival founder Scott Emslie has been tweaking the event since its inception in 2007.  Critics have long said the event only appealed to the younger crowd.

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“I think over the last couple of years we’ve seen a younger, and younger crowd coming and that’s one of the things we wanted to do this year, is just diversify a little bit,” says Emslie.  “We’re not going completely away from where we’ve been but we’ve brought in a bunch of really big acts that should draw a bit of a wider demographic like Tegan and Sara, Chromeo, J. Cole. The appeal for artist like that is a little big wider than the electronic music that we’ve been booking a lot in the past.”

The event was also a magnet for gangs. RCMP went public this week saying that gang members are not welcome. Emslie says the police warning was little overblown.

“I understand the importance of sending the message that gangs aren’t welcome and if it helps deter gangs I’m 100 per cent behind it. I don’t think it should be a reflection of our event because I just don’t see the gang members here,” he says.

Gangs or no gangs, RCMP say they’ll be out in full force.

“Everyone’s backpacks are searched — no liquid or drinks allowed onto the site,” says Sgt. Ann Morrison. “The cursory searches consist of person searches, fanny packs, backpacks, those kind of things.”

One of the big changes to this year’s festival is not so much what’s happening inside the grounds but rather outside. Emslie says he’s hired a number of by-law officers to deal with complaints, particularly parking.

Another big change is the date. The three day event has been traditionally held on the August long weekend, but Emslie agreed to change the date to help ease the burden on the RCMP and its resources.

He says the date change has translated into softer ticket sales.

“We’re about 90 per cent sold, but over the last three years we’ve sold out well in advance, so we’re a little bit lower compared to past years, but we’re still confident that on the weekend of, we’ll get to that sold out number or at least close to it,” says Emslie.

He says he would like to revisit the idea of going back to the August long weekend next year.

“At this point, our main concern is just getting through this weekend, making sure it’s a good, safe, clean event but it’s definitely something that’s in our minds and we want to open up those discussions in August and start talking to the community about it,” he says.

In an attempt to make up for the softer sales, for the first time, tickets are being sold at the gate.

The gates open Friday at 10 a.m.

Continue reading Centre of Gravity wants to revisit August long weekend

Industrial spill of frac sand in Bashaw prompts health warning

EDMONTON – After confirming the public may have been exposed to an industrial spill of frac sand, Alberta health officials have issued an advisory for residents.

The spill happened on June 17 at the Wild Rose Country Commodities site near the CN railway in the town of Bashaw.

Officials say it involved about 580 tonnes of frac sand.

Alberta Health Services says the spill has been cleaned up, but is asking any individuals who may have removed sand from the site to take the following precautions:

Dampen the sand by misting with water to control dusts and the transmission of airborne particulatesThe material should then be securely bagged and disposed of at a municipal landfillDo not inhale the dust which may be created during the handling of the productWear goggles and respiratory protectionWash clothing and footwear after handling materials; andKeep children away from the area while handling the material

Frac sand is a very fine crystalline silica (quartz) material and can easily be mistaken for sand that can be used in children’s sandboxes or playgrounds. AHS says direct exposure to it – or inhalation of it – can pose a health risk. However, it says limited, short-term exposure isn’t expected to cause serious health effects.

Anyone who believes they may have been exposed to the material should contact AHS Environmental Public Health at 1-877-360-6366.

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Alberta’s success creating economic divide in Canada: Bloomberg

EDMONTON- There’s no question that Alberta has a strong economy, but just how strong is it compared to other Canadian provinces?

According to a  recent Bloomberg article, when it comes to the Canadian economy, “there’s Alberta, and there’s everywhere else.”

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The author states, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, Alberta was responsible for the national net employment growth in the past year, and that the province is surpassing the rest of Canada when it comes to trade surplus, gross domestic product and overall economic growth rate.

“I don’t think Edmontonians and Albertans are as sensitive as they might be to the economic insecurity that people in other areas, particularly in eastern Canada, experience,” said John Rose, the city of Edmonton’s chief economist.

The article highlights that, within the last 12 months, Alberta has gained over 81,000 jobs while the rest of Canada lost around 9,500.

READ MORE: Canada’s economy to grow, Alberta’s to boom 

“[In other provinces] your job is not necessarily guaranteed, your income is not necessarily all that good and it might not go up,” explained Rose.

Rose agrees Alberta’s enormous economic growth can be attributed to its strong energy sector.

Bloomberg points out the output from Alberta’s oilsands is expected to more than double to 4.1 million barrels a day by 2025. According to Statistics Canada, the value of oil exports have doubled from 42.8 billion in 2009 to 81.7 billion in 2013.

Not only is the economy booming, Alberta’s population is growing at a fast pace. Tens of thousands of young workers come to Alberta from other provinces to take advantage of the low unemployment rate and high job security. The energy sector also creates numerous job opportunities with the added bonus of a high wage.

In 2011-2012, about 27,700 people  moved to Alberta from other provinces, more than any other area. And, in July 2013, Alberta’s population topped 4 million – the largest annual increase in Canada.

READ MORE: Alberta’s population tops 4 million

Rose says this population growth acts as inflation control for the province.

“The combination of increased national migration and increased net in provincial migration has allowed our labour force to grow,” he explains.

“That’s helped keep a lid on labour costs which got right out of control in 2005, 2006 and 2007.”

According to Bloomberg’s calculations, if Alberta continues to grow at this rate it will surpass Quebec’s economy within the next three years.

Continue reading Alberta’s success creating economic divide in Canada: Bloomberg

Sask. teen swims English Channel raising money for juvenile diabetes

REGINA – Seventy years after a soldier from Saskatchewan joked about swimming the English Channel, his teenage granddaughter has actually done it.

Her successful attempt was also a fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Canada.

Meghan Chisholm, 19, of Swift Current made the crossing from Dover to the French coast on Tuesday in 14 hours and 39 minutes.

“I was really proud of her. That’s a real challenge,” Denis Chisholm, 90, said Wednesday from Regina.

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“Meghan, when she makes up her mind to do something, she does it.”

In the summer of 1944, he was standing on the shore at Cap Griz Nez in France. Chisholm was a member of the Regina Rifles Regiment and it had only been a few weeks since the D-Day invasion.

He was 20 at the time and was with the Canadians as they fought their way inland from Normandy, crossed the Seine River and turned out to the coast.

The region had heavily fortified German coastal batteries and was also used by the Nazis to launch the dreaded V1 flying bombs, also known as buzz bombs, which hit English cities late in the war.

“I remember standing on Cap Griz Nez and talking to an old buddy from Winnipeg. I said, ‘Johnny do you think we could swim that?’” Chisholm recalled.

“You could see the white cliffs of Dover. It was a beautiful day.”

“We were just kidding around. We were in the middle of the war. And England looked very enticing with the white cliffs.”

A few months ago, Chisholm learned that Meghan would attempt the swim that he and his friend had only chuckled about.

Meghan has been swimming competitively for years and is a lifeguard, swimming instructor and coaching assistant for the Swift Current Barracudas swim team.

She had always wanted to do a long-distance swim. But despite long months of preparation, surprises happened Tuesday morning when she set out.

Her father, John, explained in an email that Meghan wasn’t the only swimmer to depart and was slated to start fourth. But the swimmer in the No. 2 slot backed out, bumping her up to an earlier start time.

Meghan and her family made their way to the Dover docks at 5:30 a.m. She had only had four hours sleep. At 6:09 a.m., she slid into the water and started swimming for France.

The waves in the channel sometimes swelled to three metres high. Jellyfish stung her leg, arm and even her nose. She ate soup, chunks of banana and other high-carbohydrate mixtures that were passed to her in bottles.

She wasn’t allowed to touch the escort boat at any time.

That was the easy part. Ten kilometres from the French coast, the tide shifted and she was forced to reduce her speed.

“Am I swimming in circles? Where are we going?” she said of her thoughts during the swim. “I actually missed the tide to bring me in, so I was going against the waves,” Chisholm told CJME radio in Regina from Dover.

He father said they could see Cap Griz Nez to the east of them and a couple of French towns directly ahead.

“We shouted words of encouragement to her as she had come this far and now she was in grasp of the French coast,” he wrote in the email.

“The last four kilometres seemed like an eternity.”

Three strangers on the beach rushed to congratulate Meghan when she finally stepped out of the water on Tuesday evening. After chatting briefly with them, she waded back in to reach the escort boat.

Her total distance was 48.6 kilometres – 14 kilometres longer than planned due to the tides.

Her father said she told him she had wanted to give up, but remembered advice from an Australian swimmer who had already completed a successful crossing.

“He said to her that he felt the same thing, wanting to give up, but if he failed, he would only have to come back another time and do it all over again.”

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall congratulated Meghan on Wednesday on becoming the first person from his province to swim the channel.

The accomplishment was one her grandfather said he never could have imagined as he gazed out over the water decades ago.

“No, I never dreamed that 70 years later … I’d ever have somebody that would swim the English channel, or even think about it.”

©2014The Canadian Press

Continue reading Sask. teen swims English Channel raising money for juvenile diabetes

Health policy keeps elderly couple from joining family in Alberta

CALGARY- A Canadian family dealing with major health issues is facing a new battle: government red tape.

Airdrie’s Johanna Hirons wants her elderly parents to move from Toronto to Alberta, as they both require care. Her father Tony currently lives in a nursing home in Toronto, and her mother now faces health problems.

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Unfortunately, a policy from Alberta Health has left them stranded. Legislation states that anyone moving from out of province must live in Alberta for 12 months before being eligible for any kind of continuing care subsidy. If the Hirons were to move to Airdrie, they would be on the hook for $7,500 per month for an entire year.

“Right now my mom pays around $1,800 to $1,900 a month for his care in Toronto, and I’m assuming it’s around the same cost here,” says Johanna Hirons. “But $7,500 dollars a month is really prohibitive.”

Ironically, it wouldn’t be a problem if the family was moving from Alberta to Ontario, as Ontario Health only requires people to live there for three months before joining the province’s insurance plan. That waiting period is waived for those who move directly into a long term care facility.

“I don’t understand how that’s remotely acceptable that a Canadian citizen can’t move from one province to another and be with his family, especially when he’s in such a vulnerable position,” Hirons complains.

Despite multiple inquiries, neither Alberta Health Services or Alberta Health have responded to Global News’ requests for comment.

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Hunter Mahan returns to deal with ‘unfinished business’ at RBC Canadian Open – National

WATCH: Hunter Mahan was the 36-hole leader at last year’s RBC Canadian Open when he had to leave suddenly for the birth of his daughter. Mahan recounts the incredible experience

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Ile Bizard, Que. — It wasn’t the way he expected to leave last year’s RBC Canadian Open. In the lead on Saturday, warming up for his third round, Hunter Mahan’s manager’s cellphone went off. Something was clearly wrong, and it didn’t take long before Mahan, who is based in Dallas, Texas, to be told his wife had gone into labour a month early with the couple’s first child.

What started as a day full of potential turned into a day with another possibility altogether.

READ MORE: Part-time golfer Kevin Carrigan seeking Canadian Open title

“I was excited to start the day,” Mahan, who was at Royal Montreal Golf Club for this year’s Canadian Open, said. “I remember waking up and going through my normal routine and getting out to the course and excited how I was playing that week and kind of halfway home to trying to win this event. And then getting the phone call, it was kind of pretty shocking.”

Mahan was left with a bunch of questions. How far along was his wife? When would the baby arrive? And could he get back to Texas in time for the delivery?

The doctor assured him he had time—but it was the same physician who told him his wife, Kandi, shouldn’t give birth for another month.

“It started with shock and then it was kind of like how do I get home?” he says. “So it was a little bit of frantic, a little craziness.”

After withdrawing from the tournament, Mahan and his manager searched for a way back to Texas. In a turn of serendipity, one of Mahan’s friends knew someone at a Dallas company and the business had a jet that was returning to the state that afternoon. They had room to take the golfer. He jumped in a car and within a couple of hours of receiving the call from his wife, Mahan was in the air heading home.

“Trying to get home, trying to cross the border wasn’t going to be easy,” he said. “It was incredibly lucky and fortuitous. It’s just amazing how things worked out.”

Mahan’s withdrawal from the tournament opened up an opportunity for Brandt Snedeker, who vaulted into the lead on Saturday and held off a charging Dustin Johnson in the final round to win the tournament. By that time Mahan wasn’t paying attention. Instead of worrying about golf he was figuring out how to change a diaper. Snedeker, in turn, sent some baby clothes for Mahan’s new arrival.

“It’s amazing what happens from being two people just in a marriage, a husband and wife, and all of a sudden having a third person in the world changing everything,” Mahan said. “And it changes everything overnight, too. From Friday, with me finishing up here and just playing golf and then basically Sunday morning I’m a father and I’ve got this girl I’ve got to take care of for the rest of my life. ”

Mahan is back this year to try to deal with some unfinished business. On the other hand, his daughter, Zoe, will turn one on Monday and her father is hoping he can bring home a big present, one he could readily afford should he manage to take home the $1-million prize that comes with winning the Canadian Open.

Continue reading Hunter Mahan returns to deal with ‘unfinished business’ at RBC Canadian Open – National

Road construction delays cause headaches for drivers, businesses – Calgary

CALGARY- Weeks of intense construction work along Bow Trail and 14 Street has some southwest Calgary businesses taking a hit.

Access to stores near 37 Street has been virtually cut off by the road work, which started before Stampede.

“When they can do Deerfoot [Trail] in a matter of days and this is only 10 blocks of Bow Trail and it’s been over three weeks, it’s disappointing,” says John Fitzsimmons from Fitz Flooring.

In frustration, he has put up a sign that reads ‘Bow Trail is not Rome. Please complete.’

One wireless shop only saw a couple of customers show up the entire past weekend.

“Walk- in traffic is a lot lower,” complains Simon Kassem from ClearWest Solutions. “Over the weekend it was really hard to see clients come through.”

A cheeky sign, in response to road work along Bow Trail.

Gary Bobrovitz/Global News

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The city says paving crews encountered problems with a gas line, but expect to be back on track in the coming days.

“The project timeline for Bow Trail is until mid-August, so we will be up in the area doing paving work,” explains Carissa Vescio from the City of Calgary. “Certainly access to those businesses will be a lot easier come this weekend.”

Road work along 14 Street near 17 Ave. S.W. is also creating headaches. The usual four lanes of traffic have been reduced to two.

“35 to 40 per cent we lost in two months time of our business—that’s expensive,” says Surya Visvanatha who owns a nearby UPS store “It is expensive and nobody can even walk in.”

The city recommends avoiding the area over the weekend, when more intersections are scheduled to close.

Continue reading Road construction delays cause headaches for drivers, businesses – Calgary